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Canton Seed Library: Home


What’s a seed library?

A seed library is an organized collection of seeds from which users may “check out” small amounts to take home and plant. Since returning them later as with books and other traditional library media would be quite impossible, patrons may instead “return” borrowed seeds by saving and donating some from the plants grown from their initial borrowed sample.


Where is it?

The Canton Seed Library is located across from the Circulation Desk. Seeds are organized in the cabinet by seed-saving difficulty, then alphabetically by common name, then alphabetically by variety.


When are you open?

The Seed Library is open during regular Canton Public Library hours. Visit the library website for updated hours.


What’s the borrowing process?

The Seed Library operates primarily on the honor system. While there is no traditional “check-out” process, we do ask that patrons record what they borrow in the Member Seed Record binder by the cabinet. If this is your first time borrowing seeds, please fill out a Membership Record form and turn it in at the desk. Please limit your selection to five (5) envelopes of fewer, as we have limited quantities of each type of seed.


Do I need to return the seeds? Aren't I going to plant them? How does this work?

Nope! We appreciate and accept donations, but the Seed Library is first and foremost a hands-on educational resource, and learning to save seeds can be tricky at first. There is no requirement or obligation to return leftover seeds or those of the next generation from your plants that have gone to seed, but it is always appreciated. Bringing in your leftover or saved seeds helps us maintain the collection for future users. 

If you are able to return or donate seeds, bring them to the library in a sealed paper envelope with your name and the plant name, variety, and year of harvest written on it. Please also record this information in your Member’s Seed Record under “Returning/Donating.”


How do I save seeds? What does this mean?

Seed saving means allowing some of the plants you grow to go to seed and then harvesting and preserving some of those seeds for the next growing season. Seed-saving techniques vary by type of plant. Check out our resource list for more information about saving seeds.


The CPL Seed Library is a hands-on educational resource dedicated to increasing awareness of the benefits of gardening and seed saving as well as nurturing Canton’s thriving community of gardeners through education and resources that foster community resilience, sustainability, and a culture of sharing.

CPL Seed Library

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Ashley Perry
786 Washington Street
Canton, MA 02021
781-821-5027 x4114

Seed Packet